Manuscripts/Mixed Material Journal by Alexander Graham Bell, from November 7, 1901 to April 29, 1902
Ancients convinced of impossibility of men being able to fly, and they appear to have made no attempts in this direction at all. Flying an attribute of the Gods or more powerful divinities. (Encyc. Brit.I, 185) (Angels — angelic beings, &c. &c. winged horses and monsters.
Middle Ages — Superstition — ignorance — fanaticism prevalent. Birds' wings for angels — bats' wings for devils — broomsticks for witches — art of flying was an affair of magic.
Roger Bacon (13th Century) — Quote Dr. Wise's Aeronautics.
Albertus Magnus (Who flourished first half of 13th Century).
Quotation from Astra Castra p. 25: —
“Take one pound of sulphur, two pounds of willow carbon, six pounds of rock salt ground very fine in a marble mortar; place, where you please, in a covering made of flying papyrus to produce thunder. The covering in order to ascend and float away, should be long, graceful, well filled with this fine powder; but to produce thunder, the covering should be short, thick, and half full.”
(Encyc. Brit. I, 185.)